2 September 1996

The Lawyer

  • 'Execution Lee' stands firm

    7-Sep-1996

    Martin Lee Chu-Ming is a dangerous man - or so China would have us believe. In reality, his demure appearance is no fake and he makes no attempt to hide his passion for unified democracy under his tailor-made suits.In fact, Lee is one of the most respected barristers and politicians in Asia. He is chair of the Democratic Party of Hong Kong and a staunch advocate of human and civil rights, issues which have made him the sharpest thorn in China's side.His ...

  • 1997 and all that

    7-Sep-1996

    The growth of international law firms in Hong Kong has been astounding - in the last five years their number has almost doubled.This increase is mainly represented by US firms, which followed their major US investment banking clients to Hong Kong between 1990 and 1992, only to follow them back again in 1993 and 1994. But the local Hong Kong-based law firms have also experienced unprecedented rates of growth, and profitability has soared on the back of the Hong Kong property ...

  • A&O promotions

    7-Sep-1996

    Allen & Overy has promoted six of its solicitors to partnership in its Far East offices. They are: litigation solicitor Mimmie Chan, property lawyer Philip Walden and corporate lawyer Neal Stender , at the Hong Kong office; Angus Duncan, international capital lawyer, who is being relocated from London to Tokyo; banking lawyer Fiona Rice, at the Singapore office; and Polish banking lawyer Wojciech ...

  • Alsops hands out millions in mystery donations

    7-Sep-1996

    Alsop Wilkinson's Andrew Young has been catapulted into the limelight with his orchestration of a mystery donation of nearly £10 million to UK charities, including one run by Benedictine monks in a remote corner of West Sussex.Young, head of the private client department, spends much of his time setting up offshore trusts for wealthy individuals.It came as a welcome break to his daily routine when he found himself informing the charities that they ...

  • AMA steps up threat of action over CCT plans

    7-Sep-1996

    LOCAL government lawyers have endorsed council threats to take legal action against the Government if it goes ahead with plans to extend compulsory competitive tendering (CCT) to white collar work.The initiative is being led by the Association of Metropolitan Authorities (AMA) with the support of the Association of District Councils and the Association of County Councils.AMA members met with counsel last Thursday to discuss whether the six-week consultation period ...

  • ANALYSIS:Injury has its compensations

    4-Sep-1996

    As one of our PI Settlement notes last week indicates - a £158,000 CICB pay-out to attack victim Martin Davies - criminal injury compensation awards can be extremely high.Other than Green Form consultation, legal aid is not available to back CICB claims but the involvement of solicitors and counsel in the Davies case leaves no doubt that the profession has an important role to fulfil.It is also a reminder that the CICB will, under the right ...

  • Apil forms united Irish specialist group

    4-Sep-1996

    LAWYERS from both sides of the Irish border have joined forces to form a new personal injury group.It is to be created under the auspices of the UK-based Association of Personal Injury Lawyers, which has an international membership.The new Irish Group, made up of lawyers from Northern Ireland and the Republic, will operate as one of Apil's specialist groups.It will be jointly co-ordinated by Gerard Daly, of Belfast-based Francis Hanna & Company, ...

  • Applying equality to the silks system

    4-Sep-1996

    Women, yet again, are not making the grade. Or so the latest list of newly appointed Queen's Counsels would have us believe. This year's crop of silks reveals the same old story - four women are successful out of 40 applicants, representing a one in 10 chance of success if you're a female.Males, on the other hand, have a one in seven chance of a winning application. Little wonder women believe the odds are stacked against them. Little ...

  • Arbitration slammed as costly and slow

    7-Sep-1996

    Arbitration has been slated as costly, time-consuming and inflexible, in a survey conducted by City firm Berrymans.The survey revealed that arbitration, introduced as a cost-effective and speedy alternative to litigation, is not popular with insurance companies.Paul Taylor, a leading insurance litigator and senior partner at Berrymans, presented the results of the survey to the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators at a symposium last month.The firm ...

  • Ashursts in UK system first

    7-Sep-1996

    Alison Laferla reportsAshurst Morris Crisp has set a precedent by investing over £1 million in a new practice management system.The firm has chosen to install a Keystone practice management system after putting the project out to tender last year. It will be the first UK practice to implement the system, developed by New Zealand-based company Keystone Systems.

  • Betting on Jane Betts

    4-Sep-1996

    Each week, I read with mounting dread the latest developments surrounding the Law Society in your magazine.I keep hoping there will be some end in sight to the bickering but it never seems to happen. The damage to the profession's image will be irreparable if something is not done soon.For that reason I welcome the appointment of Jane Betts as our new Secretary General. I hope it does not sound sexist to say that, because she is a women, she ...

  • Brief

    4-Sep-1996

    This was the moment that convinced judges there was nothing Dibb Lupton Broomhead partner Paul Eardley didn't know about Australian terriers. Eardley, a company commercial partner at the firm's Manchester office, won best of breed with his dog Ch. Sherex Shiraz. One of the country's leading Australian terrier breeders - he has eight of them - Eardley bought Shiraz's parents over from Australia when he was practising there at Mallesons Stephen Jaques. And in case ...

  • Brief

    7-Sep-1996

    PLANS to create a National Museum of Law (right) in Nottingham have received £4.215 million from the National Lottery. Conservationists in Nottingham have already converted part of the town's historic Shire Hall where the law courts, police station and prisons have been since the 14th century.The lottery money, along with around £1 million of European funding, will be used to convert the remainder of Shire Hall so that it can exhibit collections of police ...

  • Brief

    4-Sep-1996

    Italian lawyer Alessandro Vaselli has been recruited by Birmingham firm Wragge & Co to work in the banking litigation team for its Italian clients. He was previously in-house with the London branch of Italian Bank, Banca Nazionale del Lavoro. Vaselli is one of five Italian lawyers working at Wragge & Co. The firm's European nationals also include four French lawyers, three German and one Hungarian. ...

  • Brief

    7-Sep-1996

    Tony Henman, senior partner at Oxford firm Henmans, appeared before a different court last week when he watched his son Tim do England proud at Wimbledon. Henman, a personal injury lawyer and keen sportsman, took time off with his wife Jane to watch all his son's Wimbledon matches. Staff in the firm also followed Tim's progress on televisions which were brought into the office. "We are delighted for Tim," said Henman. "It is a just reward for the consistent hard work he has ...

  • CAB legal advice 'below standard'

    4-Sep-1996

    A LEAKED document highlighting the poor standard of help offered by the Citizens Advice Bureau underlines the "grave dangers" of Government plans to boost the sector's role, according to a leading legal pressure group.The Legal Action Group (LAG) has published details of an internal report commissioned by the National Association of Citizens Advice Bureaux (Nacab) describing it as "damning" and "disturbing".The report analysed 319 employment cases handled ...

  • CD-Rom move a first

    7-Sep-1996

    Commercial firm Nabarro Nathanson has produced its brochure on CD-Rom.

  • Challenge of the charter

    4-Sep-1996

    In my article (The Lawyer 13 February) I asked what lessons were learned and what useful information was gained as a result of the Law Society's December 1994 study into the use of a conveyancing quality mark in Northern Ireland. It also looked at successful conveyancing firms in this country. It would appear that no response has been made to my question, either by the Council of the Law Society or Richard Hegarty, the chairman of the Property and Commercial Services ...

  • Change is the only way forward

    7-Sep-1996

    Before I wrote this piece I wandered down memory lane. In doing so I came across some comments made by Martin Mears last August. They bear repeating. "All this amounts to a very specific programme. Some parts of it will be easier to achieve than others. In any event it will in, say, six months time, be possible to assess what genuine steps forward have been made." Well now we know how much has been achieved, not six months from last August but nearly a ...

  • China may shirk human rights duty in Hong Kong

    7-Sep-1996

    CHINA is likely to shirk its duty to report on human rights in Hong Kong when it takes control of the colony next year, the worlds' leading lawyers are warning.The warning comes in the wake of China's refusal to allow eight Hong Kong protesters to enter the country to present a petition demanding safeguards for Hong Kong's democracy last week.Under the joint declaration China signed with the UK in 1984, China, once it takes control of Hong Kong, ...

  • City partner trying to sway election, claims Bogan

    7-Sep-1996

    Clifford Chance is caught up in a row over accusations that senior partner Keith Clark has tried to persuade the firm's lawyers to take sides in the Law Society elections.Contender Anthony Bogan has complained to Clark about a memo he circulated to staff urging them to vote in the poll and in which Clark said he was backing Tony Girling.Bogan and Girling are standing ...

  • CLLIX court listings service price slashed

    7-Sep-1996

    The price of court listings service CLLIX has been slashed after a disappointing uptake by users.CLLIX, developed by the Legal Information Exchange, the Lord Chancellor's Department and the Bar Council in 1992, is used by only 50 chambers and firms.It sends court lists over a telephone line as they are published. Data is available from all 78 Crown Court centres throughout England and Wales.The price for a single user has been reduced from £1,625 ...

  • Compensation payments cut

    4-Sep-1996

    A DRAMATIC £750 cut in individual contributions to the Solicitors Compensation Fund is planned by the Law Society.Sole practitioners and City firms alike will welcome the move, which will provide the largest firms with a one-off windfall saving of up to half a million pounds.The body's ruling council will be asked to approve the reduction, from £1,000 to £250, at its meeting on 27 April.The Law Society puts the move down to ...

  • Coopers examines legal options

    4-Sep-1996

    ACCOUNTANTs Coopers & Lybrand may forge a strategic alliance with a City firm as part of ambitious plans to expand its legal services operations.Coopers expects to unveil expansion measures this summer after a review of options, including tying with a law firm, outright merger or starting a legal practice from scratch."An alliance with established lawyers is obviously one route open to us," said a Coopers spokesman. A final decision could come as early as June ...

  • Cost above justice

    7-Sep-1996

    The Lord Chancellor, in his White Paper on legal aid, has neatly sidestepped the real issue in his quest to impose strict budgetary control on the system. Access to justice has taken a back seat to be replaced by the simple issue of cost.The only clear winner in this White Paper is the Government. Not only does the paper contain plans to make legally aided clients pay a minimum contribution, it also de facto minimises choice of solicitor for the client. With ...

  • Couderts plans major expansion in London

    4-Sep-1996

    US FIRM Coudert Brothers is planning a major international expansion of English lawyers which would see its London office grow from 28 lawyers to 100 within the next five years.Administrative partner in London, Steven Beharrell, said the firm was developing the capital as its main European centre and would be recruiting reputable City lawyers.The firm also plans to recruit heavily in New York, its largest office, and in Asia, increasing the proportion of English ...

  • David Cruickshank looks at inconsistencies in EC tax laws

    4-Sep-1996

    The impact of European Community law on UK domestic law is an increasingly high profile and controversial issue. Most attention has been focused on sensitive areas involving obvious points of public interest, such as sentencing matters, but developments in the more arcane area of tax law may turn out to be equally significant.A recent decision by the House of Lords provides a graphic illustration. In the ICI v Colmer case the house ruled that an ICI/Wellcome joint ...

  • Dentons headhunt

    7-Sep-1996

    Denton Hall has poached international corporate partner Steven Goodman from Berwin Leighton where he has been for the past 12 years. Antony Grant, head of Dentons' corporate group, said that Goodman's expertise and experience in international joint ventures, multi-jurisdictional mergers and acquisitions, Japanese investment and projects in Central and Eastern Europe matched Dentons' own strategies for these areas. Goodman said: "I have had 12 happy years at Berwin Leighton. ...

  • Diamonds heist claim

    7-Sep-1996

    British Airways is facing a High Court battle over three bags of diamonds which went missing. Nine diamond forwarders, from Israel, Bombay and Antwerp, and the diamond owners, from Antwerp and Israel, are suing BA for £1,044,623 plus interest. The High Court writ claims two airport employees stole the diamonds while loading them on to a BA flight at Brussels airport. The plaintiff's are also suing BA's agents NV Securair, Belgravia ...

  • District judges ready for Woolf

    4-Sep-1996

    LORD Woolf's impending civil justice reforms will swell the ranks of the district judiciary and lead to an "increasing recognition" of their work, according to their newly elected president.District judge Dick Greenslade, the new president of the Association of District Judges, has identified Lord Woolf's plans for fast track litigation for claims under £10,000 as the key new challenge for district judges.The Gloucester County Court judge is a ...

  • Don't call me pint sized

    7-Sep-1996

    I refer to your article entitled "Hard tax, soft porn" (25 June). Although I appreciate that in some quarters "any publicity is good publicity", I do think you should note the following:Marilyn Chamers was a client of my firm, Lubar & Youngstein, before I joined Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, and she certainly did have tax matters in the UK for which she needed help.If your reporter had been a bit more observant, ...

  • Englishman's battle to untie hangman's knot

    7-Sep-1996

    The horrors of death row are not usually part of maritime law. But Nabarro Nathanson's shipping litigation partner George Brown is a man who juggles both in his work.As well as his normal practice, Brown takes up the legal cudgels for those in far corners of the Commonwealth where the hangman's noose is still a reality. He is currently waiting for the outcome of his latest case ...

  • Eversheds staff to monitor each other

    7-Sep-1996

    THE TWELVE regional offices and 715 solicitors of Eversheds are to regularly check each other's response times to clients, quality of legal advice and conduct of case work in a bid to standardise procedures throughout the national firm.The firm, which has evolved from 12 separate regional practices, each with its own set of standards and procedures, wants to unify its practices and win ...

  • Ex-Baileys partner sues for breach of contract

    7-Sep-1996

    TWENTY partners at the London firm Baileys Shaw & Gillett are being sued for breach of contract by a former salaried partner.In a statement of claim lodged at the Central London County Court, Pauline Walker accused the firm of breaching the employment severance arrangements that she had been agreed with the partners.She is claiming for the loss of £18,064 salary and £1,538 accrued holiday entitlement.The dispute centres on the events leading ...

  • Expect legal aid lottery, say experts

    7-Sep-1996

    Legal expenses insurers have welcomed the Government's proposals on legal aid, which they believe will boost the legal insurance market .Bob Gordon, technical director of Greystoke Legal Services, said legal expenses insurance offered some hope to clients. "People need to know there are alternatives to legal aid which are available now," he said. He predicted the legal expenses insurance market would grow and said "in a relatively short time it will become normal".

  • Financial Management. Wake up call to competitive practice

    7-Sep-1996

    The trend of recent years continues, as more than 70 per cent of firms responding to the fifth The Lawyer/Coopers & Lybrand survey reported increased profits, with strong performers at both ends of the size spectrum. Nearly 90 per cent of the larger firms, those with 30 or more partners, reported increased profits while 94 per cent had improved billings. By comparison, 95 per cent of the smaller firms, those with four partners or less, reported increased ...

  • Financings

    7-Sep-1996

    Herbert Smith acted for National Provident Institution for the issue of £100 million of undated subordinated guaranteed bonds. Linklaters & Paines acted for the trustee and managers.

  • Financings

    4-Sep-1996

    Laurence Graham advised Taverners Trust on its formation and Offer for Subscription to raise up to £40m in conjunction with its listing on the London Stock Exchange. The new investment trust is to be managed by Abtrust Fund Managers. Norton Rose advised Greig Middleton & Co, sponsor to the issue.

  • Firms enjoy feel-good factor

    7-Sep-1996

    Denton Hall and Manches & Co have each tied the knot on a deal in the retail market, where there is evidence that the elusive feel-good factor is persuading consumers to spend more money in the high street.Tony Grant led the Dentons team which advised wholesaler Bemrose Corporation in its acquisition of Charles Letts Group, the country's largest manufacturer of diaries, for £24.1 million. The purchase was partly financed by a rights issue for £21. 5 million.

  • Firms go on Moscow recruitment drive to counter skills shortage

    4-Sep-1996

    A SERIOUS shortage of experienced lawyers is taking the shine off the rapid growth of international law firms in Russia.Managing partner of Baker & McKenzie's Moscow office Paul Melling said there were about 40 Western offices in the city and they all had recruitment problems.He said there was a shortage of bilingual lawyers with enough experience in Russia.

  • Firms revamp to lose stuffy image

    7-Sep-1996

    A prowling orange cat has been adopted by Bristol firm Osborne Clark to adorn its stationery and office signs.The new logo, a far cry from the traditional legal images of wigs and quills, is an attempt by Osbornes to update itself and stand out from the crowd.A second large regional firm, Manchester's Donn & Co, also announced a revamp last week. It too has a new logo, and has changed its name to Donns.Both firms attribute their revamps to the ...

  • Flotations

    4-Sep-1996

    Howard Kennedy acted for David Glass in the flotation of David Glass Associates on the alternative investment market with a placing to raise £1.5m.

  • Flotations

    7-Sep-1996

    Lawrence Graham advised Beeson Gregory in sponsoring the flotation of Lands Improvement Holdings

  • Fund for societies attacked

    4-Sep-1996

    A CHALLENGE fund set up by Chancery Lane to help local law societies pay for new initiatives has been dismissed as a "sop" by the president of one of the country's largest societies.The Law Society has invited local societies across the country to apply for a slice of the £25,000 fund by submitting projects to improve communications among practitioners.But Manchester Law Society's president, Anne Kershaw, said: "Speaking personally, I am unhappy ...

  • Future panders to technophobia

    7-Sep-1996

    Future Electronic Furniture is attempting to ease the more traditionally minded into the technology revolution with its Powerdesk range.The Powerdesk installs the PC in a hardwood desk and includes a flat screen and cordless mouse. The keyboard sits in a retractable drawer, saving space and reducing the risk of repetitive strain injury, says Future. Floppy and CD-Rom drives and the power switch are in lockable front panels. Other components are locked under the ...

  • Govt helps elderly who help themselves

    7-Sep-1996

    It was almost 10 years ago that the Government started to focus on the problem of increased longevity, when it introduced a new pensions regime as part of its efforts to encourage people to save for their old age.Life expectancy has lengthened and the Government wants to develop people's awareness that pensions are not necessarily the end of the road and that outgoings may be even higher in the final year of retirement, when the costs of long term care (LTC) ...

  • Growth hormone test case

    4-Sep-1996

    16 April is also the date set for the start of a major Queens Bench test case in which eight plaintiffs are suing over allegations that they were infected, or potentially infected, with Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease after being given growth hormones unlawfully derived from the pituitary glands of dead people. The cases are the tip of an iceberg comprising a huge number of other claims in which writs have been issued. Solicitors co-ordinating the action are David Brody of Sheffield ...

  • Home is where the computer is

    4-Sep-1996

    Among the barrage of tables and statistics in a recent survey from the Law Society - Trends in the Solicitors' Profession, Annual Statistical Report 1995 - there is one sentence that stands out."There has been little change in the structure of private practice. Growth in the number of firms was almost entirely accounted for by an increase in sole practitioner firms," it says in the summary.The survey points out that since 1985, the ...

  • Immigration rules cleared

    7-Sep-1996

    Philip Barth's article "All change on the form front" is partially incorrect as it suggests that the immigration rules change affecting applicants for extension of leave to remain has been fully implemented by the introduction of the proposed forms on 3 June.At least for the time being, the law in effect has not changed and indeed the Home Secretary has now conceded some of the points made in the article.The reason for this is the result of ...

  • In brief: Australian firm boosts London office

    7-Sep-1996

    Australian firm Minter Ellison has appointed a fourth lawyer to its London office. He is insurance lawyer Mark Doepel, a senior associate from the firm's Sydney office. Michael Walley, Minters' managing partner in London, said: "Mark is also an experienced litigation and insolvency lawyer. We will now be the only Australian firm able to offer advice in the insurance, insolvency and litigation fields in London."

  • In brief: Blake Lapthorn unites under one roof

    4-Sep-1996

    South-east firm Blake Lapthorn has abandoned its high street offices and moved to a purpose-built motorway side office complex called Harbour Court. The new office, next to the M27 at Portsmouth, will house staff from seven of its regional offices under one roof, creating a personal client division. The commercial division will remain in a similar site three junctions along the M27 where it has ...

  • In brief: Chancellor shown franchising problems

    7-Sep-1996

    Lawyers demonstrated to the Lord Chancellor the difficulties of franchising in his visit to a London legal aid firm last week.E Edwards Son & Noice was host to Lord Mackay in a visit which showed a franchised legal aid firm in operation. The Lord Chancellor spent two hours discussing the problems that franchised firms experience. Franchising partner David Emmerson said: "We are pleased that we got our points across in relation to some of the problems with the White Paper ...

  • In brief: Court procedures caught on camera

    4-Sep-1996

    Anyone called for jury service will be able to watch a new video called "Your role as a juror", brought out by the Courts Service Agency. The video is designed to clarify who is eligible to be a juror, set out courtroom procedures and explain the jurors' role and legal responsibilities. Videos replaced introductory talks by a member of court staff in 1992. The latest release takes into account the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 and a recommendation made by the Royal ...

  • In brief: From Leeds United kop to boardroom

    4-Sep-1996

    Peter McCormick of Leeds-based firm McCormicks has been appointed to the board of Leeds United Football Club, as non-executive director of Leeds United Holdings. McCormick said: "I have followed the Club since I was a small boy. I have enjoyed doing the legal work and it is a very proud moment for me to complete the journey from the kop to the boardroom." Club chair Leslie Silver said: "Peter has been associated with us for several years as legal adviser and his appointment is the direct ...

  • In brief: Geordie firms become Ward Hadaway

    4-Sep-1996

    NEWCASTLE firms Ward Hadaway and Wheldon Houlsby & Scott have merged to become one of the biggest practices in the north of England. The merged firm, to be known as Ward Hadaway, will have a total staff of 190, including 30 partners, 57 other fee-earners, five chartered town planners and one chartered surveyor. The firm will offer one of the largest town planning specialities in the region. Wheldon ...

  • In brief: Hickman awaits Legal Aid response

    7-Sep-1996

    London firm Hickman & Rose is waiting for the Legal Aid Board to respond to its affidavit, after being granted leave for judicial review last month. The firm is challenging a decision by the City of London Local Duty Solicitor Committee which stops duty solicitors delegating night-time and weekend work to non-solicitor representatives in certain cases. The local committee took the decision under powers delegated from the Legal Aid Board. Hickman & Rose argues that the board's support ...

  • In brief: Labour pledges to increase CPS success

    7-Sep-1996

    The Labour Party has pledged to reform the Crown Prosecution Service "to increase its effectiveness in securing convictions" in a manifesto unveiled last week. Measures to stamp out crime feature heavily in the policy document The Road to the Manifesto. Labour promises a system of fast track punishment for persistent offenders by halving the time from arrest to sentencing. It also urges better treatment of witnesses and victims.

  • In brief: Pensions firm Hand & Co to close

    7-Sep-1996

    Niche pensions firm Hand & Co is to close. Its sole partner, Graham Chrystie, will join 19-partner general practice Edwin Coe following the death of Sean Hand. Chrystie said: "Sean Hand founded Hand & Co just over a year ago. The firm built up a reputation as a leading pensions litigation specialist. When he died of cancer this year it became necessary to either merge or expand from within: there is ...

  • In brief: Scots gain rights of confiscation

    4-Sep-1996

    Scottish courts have new powers to confiscate property under the Proceeds of Crime (Scotland) Act 1995. The provisions, which came into force at the start of this month, allow Scottish courts to confiscate any property obtained through a serious criminal offence. Lord James Douglas-Hamilton MP, minister of state with responsibility for home affairs at the Scotttish Office, said: "The legislation will ensure that crime does not pay and that criminals will not be able to benefit from ...

  • In brief: Surrey society heads down to Epsom

    4-Sep-1996

    A debate on conveyancing promises to be the lively centrepiece of an inaugural local law society one-day conference in May. The conference, hosted by the Surrey Law Society at Epsom Racecourse, will feature the Lord Chancellor's parliamentary secretary Jonathan Evans as keynote speaker. The society was only formed two years ago when the three local law societies in Surrey merged. The conveyancing debate will see Anthony Bogan, the constituency's representative on the Law Society ...

  • In brief: Thieving solicitor has sentence cut

    7-Sep-1996

    A Sussex solicitor who stole over £5 million of clients' money had his sentence cut from 10 years to eight by the Criminal Appeal Court last week. Graham Maurice Durnford Ford, 53, from Battle in East Sussex, was sentenced to 10 years last December on 10 sample counts of theft. Hastings firm Durnford Ford collapsed in 1992, days after the fraud was discovered by other partners. Lord Justice Staughton said: "Eight years will no doubt be quite long enough to deter other solicitors ...

  • In brief: Woolf consults on court committee merger

    7-Sep-1996

    Lord Woolf has issued a consultation paper on merging the County Court and the High Court rule committees in a bid to simplify procedures. Proposals include: giving the unified committee a statutory duty to simplify procedure; dispensing with formal transfer provisions between High Court and county court; and appointing three lay members, such as academics, legal advice centre representatives or proponents of clear English to the 17-strong unified committee.

  • In-house lawyers beat private practices in tendering battle

    4-Sep-1996

    The first set of Compulsory Competitive Tendering contracts for legal services has been described by local government lawyers as "a tribute to the quality and cost efficiency of local authority legal departments".CCT for local government legal services started last week. None of the contracts tendered by London boroughs and metropolitan councils were awarded to private practices. The contracts include at least 45 per cent of the work of the legal department for a five-year ...

  • Investors cash in on demutualisation fever

    4-Sep-1996

    Demutualisations, the change of a company's status from a mutual body owned by its customers to a limited company owned by shareholders, are becoming an increasingly common event in British commercial law. These transactions are important because they impact on a vast number of people who have become members of these institutions over the years.The two groups most in the public eye in this respect are the mutual life assurance companies and the building societies, including ...

  • Irish invite budding judges to submit CVs

    4-Sep-1996

    ADVERTISEMENTS are appearing in the Irish Republic's national media, inviting members of the legal profession interested in becoming judges to submit their CVs for consideration.So far, 15 vacancies have been advertised: three in the Supreme Court, two in the High Court, seven in the Circuit Court and three in the Disctrict Court.The first appointments under the new system will be announced soon. They will be closely scrutinised by those critics who feel ...

  • Judicial Board gets operational freedom

    7-Sep-1996

    The Judicial Studies Board (JSB) has welcomed the greater autonomy and independence recently granted to it by the Lord Chancellor.The board, formerly an integral part of the Lord Chancellor's Department (LCD), will now operate as an independent unit with control of its own budget.Its members will set its own priorities and decide what training is needed for the judiciary. The LCD retains financial control, with the Lord Chancellor allocating resources.

  • Keeping up court appearances

    4-Sep-1996

    The take up of higher courts rights of audience by solicitors is disappointing in terms of the number. But a steady increase is inevitable, particularly, I suspect, among those solicitors who are involved in criminal legal aid work.I would be the first to accept that the profitability of a one-off appearance in the local crown court, probably in the face of a complete lack of judicial sympathy, is never going to appeal financially.I also ...

  • Kluwer Law unveils global contract drafting package

    7-Sep-1996

    A software package designed to draft international contracts has been launched by Kluwer Law International.Global Law Practice Systems relies on a series of questions about a proposed agreement to build a customised contract. The package features warnings of potential risks to users, plus memoranda prepared by law firms in 56 countries. The system allows draft contracts to be edited on screen.The package has been developed by US lawyers Ken Slade, of ...

  • Law Society elections. The trouble with the profession is...

    7-Sep-1996

    There can be little doubt that Law Society president Martin Mears has tapped into a reservoir of disaffection. But there is a danger that the current elections will increase polarisation at a time when we need to find common ground to revive the profession.The key issue is that the profession has not taken on board the consumer revolution of the past 25 years. Consumers of legal services are more sophisticated and competition is more intense both within the profession and ...

  • Legal Aid. When legal aid starts to go by the board

    4-Sep-1996

    The Lord Chancellor has displayed his usual Caledonian canniness in cutting back criminal legal aid.No-one would care if there were no solicitor to represent those accused and by definition guilty of some heinous or indeed petty crime. The assertion set out in last year's Green Paper, that representation in criminal cases will "continue to be available... as in the present scheme" despite a fixed budget will naturally cease to apply when the budget runs out. We are ...

  • Leicester Council's Price-Jones bows out

    7-Sep-1996

    Helen Sage reportsArthur Price-Jones has taken early retirement from his position as town clerk and deputy chief executive at Leicester City Council.Price-Jones, a former chair of the Law Society's local government group and president of the Leicestershire law society, began his career in local government 30 years ago at Nottingham City Council.He then worked at Liverpool City Council and the Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council before ...

  • Let's consult over the facts

    7-Sep-1996

    COULD I correct a fact about my continuance in practice upon becoming president of Trinity College, Oxford, in autumn.I said, as is the case, that my practice would be (subject to receipt of instructions) essentially but not exclusively an advisory and consultative one.Whether that is good news or bad and for whom, is a matter for your readership.Michael J Beloff QCGrays Inn,London WC1.

  • Limits to the prvilege defence

    7-Sep-1996

    The Media enjoys lampooning judges as old fashioned and out of touch and many of the legal profession's top names have had cause to fume over the exaggerated reporting of cases they presided over.This is especially true of Winchester Crown Court's Judge Griffiths. However, unlike some of his colleagues, Griffiths struck back.He launched a libel claim against a south coast news agency which released a distorted report of his handling of a sex ...

  • Lithuanians discover British tactics

    4-Sep-1996

    BRITISH lawyers have taken their skills to Lithuania in a seminar organised by the Trainee Solicitors' Group.The event, at the end of last month, was part of a twinning project with the Lithuanian Young Bar Association and was funded by the European Union and the Foreign Office.Its aim was to give young lawyers in Lithuania practical advice and assistance about the practices of Western lawyers. The trip was co-ordinated by Louise Bell, TSG International ...

  • Litigation Disciplinary Tribunals 09/04/96

    4-Sep-1996

    David Cochran, 51, admitted 1982, practising at material times in partnership as McKenzie & Chester, Tiverton, Devon, refused restoration to the roll after voluntarily removing his name in 1992. Cochran also ordered to pay £3,643 costs. Tribunal said Cochran had been accused of failure to comply with accounting rules, acting for his client when his own interests conflicted with those of the client, failing to carry out client instructions,

  • Litigation Disciplinary Tribunals 09/07/96

    7-Sep-1996

    Tayengwa Chitsiga, 64, admitted 1991, practising at material times initially in partnership and subsequently on own account as Chitsiga & Co, Winson Green, Birmingham, struck off. Allegations substantiated he drew client money in breach of rules and failed to keep account books properly. Tribunal told investigation accountant's report revealed cash shortage of £28,680. Tribunal said it could not avoid a finding that Chitsiga's use of ...

  • Litigation Personal Injury 09/04/96

    4-Sep-1996

    Brimacombe v Bristol & Weston Area Health Authority - QBD 25 March 199Claimant: Nicola Brimacombe, 8, suing through mother Anne BrimacombeIncident: Medical negligenceInjuries: Claimant discharged from hospital after birth; re-admitted after history of vomiting and diarrhoea; underwent operation for insertion of catheter into left kidney; ultimately suffered cardiac arrest leading to cerebral palsyAward: £805,000 agreed damages

  • Litigation Personal Injury 09/07/96

    7-Sep-1996

    King v Waltham Forest Health Authority - 14 June 1996Claimant: Sarah King, 20Incident: Medical negligenceInjuries: Claimant left in perfect physical health but severely mentally handicapped; normal life expectancyAward: £1.3 million (agreed damages)Judge: Mr Justice MorlandPlaintiff's solicitors: Field Fisher ...

  • Litigation Recent Decisions 09/04/96

    4-Sep-1996

    Number of claims asylum seekers can makeR v the Secretary of State for the Home Department, ex parte Onibiyo (1996)CA (Sir Thomas Bingham MR, Roch LJ and Swinton Thomas LJ) 28/1/9Summary: Political asylum seekers may make more than one application but it is for the Home Secretary to decide whether an application is new and different. Application for political asylum on the ground that applicant's father was being detained in Nigeria because he ...

  • Litigation Recent Decisions 09/07/96

    7-Sep-1996

    Claim to pension rights by part-time employeesFletcher v Midland Bank (1996).EAT (Mummery J, Mrs Sunderland and Mr G Wright) 24/6/96.Summary: Sex discrimination alleged by part-time workers in an appeal against dismissal of their claim to a right to participate in the employer's occupational pension schemes.Appeals by Mrs Fletcher and 21 other employees of Midland Bank against the decision by an industrial tribunal in a test ...

  • Litigation Writs 09/04/96

    4-Sep-1996

    A Merthyr Tydfil woman is seeking damages over injuries she received as a front seat passenger when a car driven by her husband crashed. Hetty Walker, 64, who was severely injured in the January 1993 crash, has issued a writ against her husband Kenneth.Writ issued by Metson Cross, London WC2. W2Geoffrey Linaker of Northamptonshire, who claims a mortgage was raised against his property by fraud, is suing solicitors Keith ...

  • Litigation Writs 09/07/96

    7-Sep-1996

    Boxer Lennox Lewis faces High Court breach of contract accusations. A writ has been issued against him and Frank Maloney by Products of Far East based in St Helier, Jersey. It claims damages for breach of a written contract dated 19 February 1991. The writ does not specify the nature of the contract at the centre of the dispute.Writ issued by Goldkorn Davies Mathias, London WC1.The brother of an assistant shop manager from Uxbridge who died ...

  • Litigation. In your own good time

    4-Sep-1996

    In his Access to Justice report, Lord Woolf said: “The key problems facing civil justice today are cost, delay and complexity.”The courts and the Government have long displayed an ambivalent attitude towards delay. Lord Woolf identified the cause as the lack of any “judicial responsibility for managing individual cases of the overall administration of the Civil Court”. As for the blame, it is placed fairly and squarely on the shoulders of legal advisers who, he says, are ...

  • Malawi opening

    7-Sep-1996

    The British Council has opened a legal and management centre in Blantyre, Malawi's commercial capital. A council spokesman said: "In a country where one management text book can cost a month's salary for a middle-ranking civil servant, the centre aims to provide easy access to up-to-date British materials, in order to improve the quality of management by both government-employed lawyers, managers and trainers, and those privately employed." The centre provides books, periodicals ...

  • Manchester firm goes into hospital

    7-Sep-1996

    Manchester law firm Donns is tapping into new markets by setting up shop in a local hospital.Donns, formerly Donn & Co, has invested £200,000 in a four-man unit after the NHS trust board at Salford's Hope Hospital invited businesses to set up there.The unit will cater primarily for hospital staff whose working hours prevent them from visiting a solicitor. It will operate an across-the-board service including personal injury work, family work, conveyancing, ...

  • Marketing a must

    7-Sep-1996

    The latest survey on financial management compiled by this magazine and Big Six firm Coopers & Lybrand looks at the link between marketing and increased business.For the many doubting Thomas lawyers who ponder the worth of marketing, the survey clearly shows the most profitable firms spend twice as much time on marketing as their colleagues. And those marketing professionals who often spend more time justifying their position to their employers than actually doing their ...

  • Mears backs SCB

    4-Sep-1996

    LAW Society president Martin Mears has defended the Solicitors Complaints Bureau against a campaign group's claims that it is solicitor-biased."I have seen no evidence whatever to suggest that the SCB displays any bias in favour of solicitors," he said in a letter to newly formed campaign group Casia (Complaints Against Solicitors Action for Independent Adjudication).The president, who was sharply critical of the bureau before he took office last year, identified ...

  • Mears faction strikes out at split society proposals

    4-Sep-1996

    CHANCERY Lane's warring factions are presenting a united front against a campaign to split the Law Society into two.Martin Mears, the Law Society president, and his deputy Robert Sayer, have distanced themselves from the new Solicitors' Association Steering Group which wants to split the society's representative and regulatory functions.While expressing sympathy for the campaign, led by conveyancing fees campaigners John Edge and Anthony Bogan, ...

  • Meat company wins judicial review

    4-Sep-1996

    As the BSE controversy still rages and new moves are taken to ban British beef from the dinner tables of the world, controls already introduced with the intention of allaying public concern are scheduled to come under attack in the High Court.Just before the storm broke, Great Harwood Food Products of Great Harwood, Lancashire, was given the green light for a courtroom confrontation with the Government over a ban on cattle vertebrae in mechanically recovered ...

  • MEPs lobbied to halt firms hitting rivals in advertising

    7-Sep-1996

    EUROPEAN law societies are lobbying MEPs to exempt solicitors from an EC directive which would legalise comparative advertising.The Law Society of England and Wales and the Law Society of Scotland currently do not allow solicitors to advertise by comparing themselves to other solicitors, but the directive legalises comparative advertising in any member state and among any profession where there is no blanket ban on advertising.Patrick Oliver, of the Law Society's ...

  • Mishcons to beef up insolvency with recruit

    7-Sep-1996

    Sinclair Roche & Temperly solicitor David Middleburgh is leaving the firm to head up the insolvency law group of Mischon De Reya.Middleburgh joins Mishcons this week as the firm strengthens its insolvency department which, to date, was run through the commercial litigation department.A spokeswoman from the firm said it was "pulling together different people in the firm who deal with insolvency" and added that the firm was keeping its eyes open for suitable individuals ...

  • More Dutch target London

    7-Sep-1996

    NAUTA Dutilh, the largest law firm in the Netherlands, has become the third Dutch firm to open a London office since 1990.The office, in the City, will be staffed by partner Diederik van Wassenaer and two associates.Van Wassenaer said there were three reasons the firm had opened shop in London."First, quite a few of our major banking clients are basing important parts of their capital markets and investment business in London and we thought it would ...

  • More fingers in the pie

    4-Sep-1996

    As a life assurance salesman, I read with glee the letter on the increasing interest of accountants in the legal profession.The "free for all" society is now touching not only the newsagents but also the legal profession.What is happening now happened to the financial services sector years ago. The referral system that worked for me very well in the past was stopped instantly because some law firms set up multidisciplinarian practices.

  • Nabarros' Twist tempted away by new role

    7-Sep-1996

    Leeds firm Hammond Suddards has recruited Helena Twist from Nabarro Nathanson to fill its recently-formed post of director of legal development.The firm wanted someone to handle legal and management training of lawyers, development of library services and strategic planning of the progress of the firm's legal services which was previously part of the development director's job.

  • News

    7-Sep-1996

    Foreign lawyers in Poland have hired a PR firm to lobby the government to let them stay in business in the wake of a threat from local lawyers.The two branches of the Polish legal profession are proposing a law change which would effectively send foreign law firms home.In response to a request from the Polish ministry of justice for a new law regulating the legal profession, the Council of Legal Advisers and the Advocate Bar are proposing to a parliamentary committee ...

  • Norton Rose closes Prague office despite promising start

    4-Sep-1996

    CITY firm Norton Rose is closing its Prague office despite optimistic hopes that it would outperform the firm's venture in Moscow.The Prague office opened in 1994 and was staffed by solicitor David Lacey, consultant Jennie Mills and three support staff.Lacey will now handle Czech clients from the London office in a section headed by corporate finance partner Andrew Phillips.

  • Paul Lomas welcomes clarification of community law.

    7-Sep-1996

    Paul Lomas is a partner at Freshfields.In Chequepoint v McClelland 6/6/96 (Phillips and Aldous LJJ and Bingham LCJ, still sitting as MR), the Court of Appeal expanded on the relationship between the Rules of the Supreme Court and the Treaty of Rome.The case concerned whether or not the treaty conflicts with order 23 r.l insofar as it permits an order for security for costs from a foreign EC company. It is usually discriminatory for security to be awarded ...

  • Penningtons partners leave

    4-Sep-1996

    CITY and Home Counties firm Penningtons has been rocked by a series of high level resignations with eight partners quitting shortly before Easter.The resignations came as speculation intensified that Penningtons was poised to axe jobs as part of a radical restructuring programme.Managing partner David Stedman said: "We are undertaking a review of our cost base which may or may ...

  • Powers takes on the Sun

    4-Sep-1996

    Whether this case will settle or not remains to be seen. But if a pending libel action scheduled for an April 16 start comes to fruition it's bound to attract enormous media attention. The plaintiff is US TV star Stephanie Powers and the action centres on allegations made in The Sun in a story headed: "Hart to Hart - Steff Took off Her Top and Demanded Sex".

  • Property

    4-Sep-1996

    Norton Rose acted for Merlin Land and Rydon Holdings in the £17m acquisition and pre-letting of a 95,000 square feet retail warehousing development in Reading Town Centre. Scottish Amicable Life Assurance Society, which funded the deal, was represented by Cameron Markby Hewitt. Part of the site was acquired from British Rail represented by Rees & Freres and part from the BP Pension ...

  • Property

    7-Sep-1996

    Wragge & Co advised Kingspark Developments on its development of the 40-acre Heinz manufacturing site at Harlsden, London. Kingspark bought the first phase of the development on a sale and leaseback arrangement with Heinz, represented by Clifford Chance. The development, a 165,000 sq ft warehouse, ...

  • Property

    7-Sep-1996

    Lovell White Durrant acted for Albion Property Investments in its acquisition of a £20 million portfolio from Langbourn Property Investment Services for a mix of cash and shares. The deal boosts Albion's property assets to £115 million and gives Kleinwort Benson Property Fund, managed by Langbourn, a 15.9 per cent stake in Albion. The initial yield is 8.5 per cent. Allen ...

  • Property

    7-Sep-1996

    Berwin Leighton acted for Banque Nationale de Paris in the sale of a portfolio of residential mortgage loans to Skipton Mortgages involving around 300 cases valued at £8 million. Skipton Mortgages was represented by Dibb Lupton Broomhead.

  • QBD cases pending

    7-Sep-1996

    Cases pending in the Queen's Bench Division jury list include: Western Provident Association v Norwich Union Healthcare & anor; British Coal Corporation v National Union of Mineworkers & anor; Penry v Drake & anor; Reynolds v Times Newspapers & ors; Morgan v Melling & anor; Newman v MGN (not before 15 July 1996); Thoday & anor v Associated Newspapers (not before 15 July 1996).

  • QC Beloff called to Olympics panel

    4-Sep-1996

    ATHLETICS enthusiast Michael Beloff QC's ticket for this summer's Olympics is in need of a new owner, thanks to an unexpected invitation to the barrister to assume a quasi judicial role in Atlanta.Beloff, who has acted in a series of high-profile sporting litigation cases, has been appointed to sit on a special panel of arbitrators at the event.The ad hoc panel is attached to the Court of Arbitration for Sport which was established in 1982 to provide ...

  • Random tax audits could hit anytime

    4-Sep-1996

    THE INLAND Revenue is set to assume sweeping powers to force lawyers to comply with the self-assessment tax regime which kicked in on 6 April.For the first time, partners and other individuals will be liable to random audits by the Revenue which, hitherto, has had to have good reasons for mounting investigations.Industry sources suggest that the Revenue may carry out up to 250,000 random audits by the year 2000."Like anyone else, the legal profession ...

  • Rival firms abandon Newmarket

    7-Sep-1996

    Two rival Cambridge regional firms are to close their Newmarket offices following internal shake-ups in which one firm will lose three of its long-standing partners.The Taylor Vinters branch office, best known for its bloodstock department headed by Jeremy Richardson, will close in October. Hewitson Becke + Shaw is pulling out of the town later this month.Taylor Vinters' decision to end the firm's historic association with Newmarket forms part of what ...

  • Ross ready for 'the worst job in law'

    7-Sep-1996

    He faces flack from both solicitors and the public, yet Peter Ross is looking forward to giving his all as director of the Solicitors Complaints Bureau. Communication, he tells Helen Sage, will be the keyOne week into his job as director of the Solicitors Complaints Bureau and Peter Ross is still smiling.He left his post as assistant chief crown prosecutor for what his predecessor, Veronica Lowe, described as the "worst job in law".He can look forward ...

  • Rouses wants to be Willoughbys in UK

    7-Sep-1996

    NICHE intellectual property firm Rouse & Co is changing its UK name to Willoughby & Partners to avoid confusion with its intellectual property enforcement business in Europe, China and Hong Kong.The firm's international work was previously done under two names: Rouse & Co in Europe and New China Consultants in China and Hong Kong. To avoid client confusion, its operations have now been named Rouse & Co International, a limited company.Under Law Society rules, ...

  • Scotland to woo the world with glossy marketing move

    7-Sep-1996

    SCOTTISH lawyers have stolen a march on their English and Welsh rivals by producing a glossy brochure designed to drum up work from foreign businesses at the American Bar Association Conference, which will be held next month.The Faculty of Advocates and the Law Society of Scotland joined forces to publish the 12-page brochure, called Scotland: Your Legal Route into Europe.It will be on display at the ABA conference in Orlando in August and later the same month ...

  • Solicitors 'too slow' in taking fees

    4-Sep-1996

    SOLICITORS are too slack about collecting fees, say their financial directors.

  • Stapely to follow Lockley out of Law Society's door

    4-Sep-1996

    SUE Stapely, head of the Law Society's press and parliamentary unit, has stepped down from her post and will leave Chancery Lane in June.News of her departure follows soon after the resignation announcement of the society's director of corporate and regional affairs, Andrew Lockley, who revealed last month that he would be taking up jobs at Irwin Mitchell and the University ...

  • Strangely familiar

    7-Sep-1996

    To someone accustomed to working in the English Bar, the first impression of the Bar of Hong Kong is akin to gazing into a mirror and seeing the reflection of a stranger wearing one of your own suits staring back. The clothes fit, but the wearer is, undeniably, not you.As in England, the Hong Kong Bar is based on the chambers system. But the cramped facilities at home - shared rooms in and around the Victorian centres of provincial cities - are replaced by spacious and glittering ...

  • Sun sets on an eastern future

    7-Sep-1996

    Historically, Hong Kong has been an attractive alternative for UK lawyers wishing to gain international experience while continuing to practise English law. For those who wanted to remain with a City or London firm, yet sought to sample life in the Far East, the opportunities in Hong Kong seemed at times almost boundless.However, during the past couple of years, changes in the dynamics of Hong Kong and the demands of clients, who expect not only negotiations to be conducted ...

  • T&N fails in appeal bid

    4-Sep-1996

    THE FAILED High Court appeal by engineering company T&N over asbestos-related illness claims will have implications for similar cases, says a lawyer involved in the hearing.The Court of Appeal last week upheld a decision awarding damages to two victims of asbestos-related disease. It ruled T&N should have known asbestos dust could cause injury to the lungs before the victims were born. It is the first time damages were awarded for asbestos claims to people who have not worked ...

  • Talks tackle 'homes for votes' implications

    7-Sep-1996

    Helen Sage reportsThe licensing of sex shops and the legal implications of the Westminster 'homes for votes' scandals are among subjects included in the Law Society's latest programme of courses for local government lawyers.The training unit of the local government group, which spearheaded training for local authorities on how to win CCT, has unveiled a programme of events addressing the main issues facing local government lawyers.

  • Technology and the law. Brave new world of re-engineered law

    7-Sep-1996

    Today, when individuals or businesses seek legal advice, they do so because they need practical guidance based on knowledge and experience of the law. Traditionally, lawyers have provided this by offering an advisory service on a consultative basis. But if similar consultations could be obtained elsewhere, would clients remain loyal or jump ship?Evidence suggests that the latter scenario would be the case, as long as the new service was cheaper, ...

  • The Lawyer Inquiry: Anthony Bogan

    7-Sep-1996

    Anthony Bogan, 37, was born in Singapore and lives in Richmond. He is a partner with Saunders Palmer Ure and is standing for the presidency of the Law Society. What was your first job?A night watchman - I kept falling asleep.What was your first ever salary as a lawyer?£3,000 per annum.What would you have done if you hadn't become a lawyer?By day a journalist, ...

  • The Lawyer Inquiry: Clare Grayston

    4-Sep-1996

    Claire Grayston was born in 1960, and currently lives and works in London, where she is head of corporate finance at Lewis Silkin. What was your first job?Marks & Spencer Saturday girl.What was your first ever salary as a lawyer?£3,750.What would you have done if you hadn't become ...

  • The Silks of '96

    4-Sep-1996

    Four chambers headed the pack of newly appointed silks in last week's appointments. Pump Court Tax Chambers, headed by Andrew Thornhill QC, has two new Queen's Counsels, as have Anthony Scrivener QC's chambers at 2-3 Gray's Inn Square, R Neville Thomas QC's chambers at 3 Gray's Inn Place and Richard Kidwell QC's chambers at 2 Crown Office Row.Of the 66 silks appointed, 14 were regional appointments. Liverpool, which had no successful applicants ...

  • They're not all like that

    4-Sep-1996

    I am sorry to see from Mr Ellingsworth's letter in your issue of 12 March 1996 that he has a low regard for solicitors in private practice. No doubt there are some who deserve this.However, for the most part he is, I hope, wrong. Certainly my colleagues and I - when lecturing on professional development courses and the professional skills courses - encourage a positive and proactive approach, quoting in support the recent Mortgage Express case. Having ...

  • Time slipping away in hunt for lawyer's lawyer

    4-Sep-1996

    TIME is running out for The Lawyer readers to cast their votes for the legal personality of the year.Votes have been flooding in for all the nominated contenders in this year's race to name the lawyer's lawyer.Last year, the top award went to Civil Court reformer Lord Woolf.The 22 nominees are listed on page 15 and voting will close next week.As The Lawyer went to press, Vice-Chancellor Sir Richard Scott and Law Society president ...

  • UK could lose out to US in attracting Israeli companies, seminar will say

    7-Sep-1996

    UK companies and investors need to make more of an effort to attract Israeli companies to London, or they will lose out to Wall Street, according to Gavin Rabinowitz, head of Nabarro Nathanson's Israel desk.Nabarros is organising a seminar aimed at encouraging the UK to invest in Israeli companies.Chaired by Lord Young, the seminar will explore the impact of the election of ...

  • UK law in profit but lacks business nous

    7-Sep-1996

    UK law firms are making more money than ever before but profits are being squeezed by a significant increase in staff costs, according to a joint survey by The Lawyer and accountants Coopers & Lybrand.The message is that firms need to manage business more efficiently if they are to improve financial performance.Robert Martin, senior management consultant at Coopers, explained: "Less profitable firms spend much more proportionately on secretaries than on professional ...

  • Urwin moves into top slot at local government group

    4-Sep-1996

    THE NEW chair of the Law Society's Local Government Lawyers Group, Peter Urwin, officially took up his new position at the end of the annual weekend school.Urwin, who has taken over from David Carter, the county secretary and deputy chief executive at Warwickshire, has been director of administration and county solicitor at Northumberland County Council since 1990. He was previously at Durham County Council where he started as an articled clerk to the clerk of the council ...

  • Watchdog sounds 'no win no fee' ads alert

    7-Sep-1996

    FIRMS are to be warned by the advertising watchdog against using the term "no win no fee" in advertisements.The Advertising Standards Authority is expected this week to tell firms they cannot use the popular term to promote conditional fees arrangements unless it is heavily qualified.The expected move has been welcomed by legal expenses company DAS, which has been pressing the ASA for a ruling."It is patently untrue that litigants can sue for free," ...

  • Why lawyers need financial advisers

    7-Sep-1996

    Lawyers have a duty to advise clients not only on strict legal issues, but also on matters that may impact on personal and business decisions.Last November, the Law Society's competence regime came into effect. This prevents law practices from being involved in Discrete Investment Business (DIB) unless they have a suitably qualified member of staff. The stringency of these requirements, together with Solicitors' Investment Business Rules (SIBR), ...

  • Windfall cash grants for law centres

    7-Sep-1996

    Law centres have received over £300,000 in funding from the National Lottery in its latest round of awards.Centres at Paddington, Salford, Wythenshawe, in Lancashire, and Harehills and Chapeltown, in Leeds, will get cash sums under the "support for low income" category.London's Paddington law centre, which received the largest grant of £134,000, will use the money to fund its welfare rights team. The project provides support for low income residents ...